The Buddy Bench (Confetti Kids #8)
By Gwendolyn Hudson Hooks
Illustrated by Shirley Ng-Benitez
Five friends from diverse backgrounds learn how to navigate common childhood challenges, new experiences, and the world around them in the realistic and kid-friendly Confetti Kids early chapter books.
In this story, Padma is excited about meeting new people at school. Making friends comes easily to her, but she soon discovers that it can be hard for others. When she notices a boy sitting by himself every day, Padma enlists her friends to create a buddy bench, where kids can go if they ever feel lonely and want a friend.
About the Creators
GWENDOLYN HOOKS is the author of Tiny Stitches: The Life of Medical Pioneer Vivien Thomas, which received an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work for Children. Thanks to her Air Force dad, she grew up in Texas and Washington in the United States, and in Italy. After teaching middle school math, Hooks decided to follow her passion and write books for children. Hooks lives in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, with her husband. Please visit her website at gwendolynhooks.com.
Shirley Ng-Benitez is a Bay Area children’s book author/illustrator who has illustrated 35+ children’s books, and has a background in Graphic Design (GabbyandCo.com), and hand-lettering (American Greetings, Inc.). She works and experiments in traditional mediums including watercolor, gouache, pen & ink, oils, and painted & cut-paper collage. Her work draws from a deep wish to add more compassion and connection in the world through her art and stories. She founded @AWEtober on Instagram, an annual art auction fundraiser since ’20, whose efforts have raised tens of thousands for various organizations supporting victims of the California wildfires, and efforts in coral reef restoration around the globe. She lives with her family and two black cats, and is thrilled to be working on her debut picture book, DOWN, THROUGH, UP by Quill Tree Books, Winter ‘25. Please visit shirleyngbenitez.com for more.